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Yeshim Blog - Crain Communications Cover Story: Editorial or Paid Advertorial?

BtoB Media Business cover story highlights the media companies who are among their advertisers while they omit SYS-CON.TV

It looks like BtoB is a monthly publication put out by Crain Communications Inc. Their Web site says: "BtoB also publishes Media Business, the magazine for business publishing executives. Because it's the only publication focused exclusively on business-to-business publishing, more than 5,000 industry leaders subscribe to Media Business for the latest trends and insightful analysis."

BtoB Media Business had a cover story in their October 2005 issue, "Lights, Camera, Action! Are you ready to deliver video content to your audience?" written by Marie Griffin.

Here is my beef with Crain Communications and their editorial policy. Their cover story highlights the media companies that are among their advertisers while they completely omit SYS-CON.TV, the pioneers of i-technology Internet television. SYS-CON.TV was announced and launched long before any of Crain's advertisers ever thought about streaming television, yet this story reads as though Ms. Griffin was instructed by her management to cover certain companies in her report. That's a shame.

Once you are perceived as publishing biased editorial content simply because the coverage you provide in your magazine is your page-three advertiser, then you will lose respect on anything you print faster than you can imagine. That's wrong. Ms Griffin should contact SYS-CON Media and do a follow-up story on the very same topic after listening to their story. Once Crain Communications does that, the same title they published may read like:

"Internet TV: CMP and Scramble to Catch Up with SYS-CON.TV?"
Major US Companies Are Now Following the SYS-CON Media Lead

FACTPOINT: SYS-CON Media is one of the very first companies in the USA (which launched the same week as in 2004), and is the first online technology publisher to harness the power of Flash video and the Flash Communication Server (Flash Comm) – a server-based platform for creating and deploying video on demand launched by San Francisco-based Macromedia in 2005 on (what else?) SYS-CON.TV.

The recent article that appeared in BtoB Media Business magazine did not accurately describe how Ziff Davis Internet, CMP Media, IDG Communications, and others are all scrambling to close the gap on i-technology publishing pioneer SYS-CON Media.

Or, rather, it described how they were not really scrambling at all so much as hobbling along behind:
• “The key is not to get too far ahead of the marketplace” (IDG’s president Bob Carrigan)
• “The supply of online video that advertisers can put advertising against is pretty scarce” (Ziff Davis Internet’s president Jason Young)

In stark contrast to such industry caution, at Montvale, NJ–based SYS-CON Media the company has been deploying seamlessly integrated, daily streaming video content throughout its entire family of i-technology portals such as,,, and 35 others since October, 2004 – months ahead of competitors like CMP Media, whose video broadcasts didn’t start until way after SYS-CON.TV.

SYS-CON.TV is rich media at its best, with daily industry interviews, weekly interactive webinars, and monthly product launches all readily accessible to SYS-CON’s readers, who very often let the videos stream in a background window while getting on with their daily work of coding or managing software development.

On the back end, SYS-CON’s multimedia team works with a select group of leading-edge providers like New York-based Stream57 for the webcast “engine” and VitalStream for the digital broadcasting platform.

On the content side, the company is pushing the envelope on a daily basis, and can on any day be found at one or even two technology conferences, while on November 18th for example the entire team will be broadcasting its video stream live from its Times Square studios, where ABC’s Good Morning America comes from each day, because it is hosting its second annual “Application Server Shoot-Out, which” involves some of the biggest companies on the Nasdaq, such as Microsoft, IBM, Sun Microsystems, Oracle, BEA Systems, and SAP.

Founder of SYS-CON Media, Fuat Kircaali, said when I asked him about his opinion on this story: “SYS-CON.TV has been screencasting intensively since more than a year ago, which debuted at our SOA Web Services Conference in 2002. Thanks to our industry partnerships with Macromedia, VtalStream, and Stream57, we were able from the outset to move faster and more dynamically than every single other online publisher.”

If Crain's story were an honost overlook, then they owe themselves and the publishing community a follow-up, otherwise they should place the note "Paid Advertorial" before their cover story headlines and print these types of editorials next to their advertisers' full-page display ads. Keep in mind, you are not fooling anyone.

That's my two cents.

posted Monday, 7 November 2005 4:30 PM EST

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SOA World Magazine News Desk trawls the world of distributed computing and SOA-related developments for the latest word on technologies, standards, products, and services and brings key information to you in a timely and convenient summary form.

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